Q: Who are you?
A: My name is Noot Seear, I’ve been a working model for 20 years and have shot campaigns for YSL, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren etc. My most recent job was with Estee Lauder, right before quarantine hit. I’m an avid surfer and outdoor enthusiast. I love cooking for my friends and setting a vibe. I’m originally from Canada but I spend my time between New York and California.
Q: What made you want to cook?
A: Like many women, in the past I’ve had a terrible relationship with food and my body. I had no idea how to achieve the ideal look set by the fashion industry, so I tried such classic diet routines as starvation, uppers, puking and chocolate laxatives. I felt terrible, and even these unhealthy efforts never gave me the body I wanted. With a lot of time and effort, I ditched those awful habits and started studying exercise and nutrition. I felt better, I looked better and it was consistent. I want to help people through cooking, with the mistakes I’ve made and how I’ve learned to be happy and healthy.
Q: How did you end up here?
A: I was very scared to go healthy and vegetarian, I was concerned I wasn’t going to have enough energy and the food would be bland. I originally taught myself how to cook with YouTube. I was constantly frustrated with how long, complex and boring so many of the videos were. And so it inspired me to make quick, delicious videos to share my findings so that everyone can enjoy the mental and physical benefits that comes with healthy eating and exercising, all in a New York minute.
Q: Tell us about your cooking.
A: I’m a plant-conscience chef. I eat vegetarian the majority of the time. But I want to be honest, when I do cook meat and eggs, I shop at farmers markets so I can easily research the farms and trust I’m getting humanely raised, organic produce. It’s not about what you eat, it’s about what your food eats. My cooking is for people like me: small apartments, tiny kitchens, and very busy schedules; quick, clean, healthy meals that are delicious.
Q: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
A: I’ve come so far on this journey, and still have so much to learn. I really want to keep growing and share what I discover. I hope in 10 years I will have helped people to eat healthier and feel stronger.
Q: What is your favorite kitchen related story?
A: I am working with The Post restaurant in Manhattan to make meals for the hospital workers during the coronavirus. It’s so important they have nourishing food right now to fuel them though their long days. I feel privileged to help these heroes.
Q: Many people compare food to sex. Why?
A: I’ve been single and in quarantine for 2 months now… What is sex again? Excuse me while I eat this warm, juicy banana bread.
Q: What is your favorite part about the creative process?
A: Learning all these new skills!! How to use a camera, lighting, sound, editing. I had to get my high school diploma to go to culinary school. I’m just soaking up all this new information like a sponge.
Q: What is your favorite food?
A: I think it’s social distancing blues but I miss my friends cooking. A feast cooked over a beach bonfire. Mmm… Paella full of smokey, roasted vegetables.
Q: What is your favorite color?
A: I’m not a big “favorites” person. Things are constantly changing for me, but right now it’s blue like the ocean.
Q: Who is your favorite chef?
A: I adore researching chefs and cookbooks, and I’m really loving Yotam Ottolenghi at the moment. I recommend checking out his cookbooks.
Q: If you were a cocktail, which would you be?
A: A margarita. Sweet with a salty rim, you’ll wanna come back for more.
Q: What is the greatest feeling in the world?
A: Setting and accomplishing goals. I’ve had so many bumps in the road on this journey. Setting a goal, pushing through and achieving it, no matter what happens. It’s just the best feeling.
Q: What is the last thing that made you laugh very hard?
A: Honestly Unemployed‘s Instagram, it’s so good!! Keeps the spirits up during these trying times.
Q: What is the last text in your phone?
A: Cecile, these questions are really hard.
Q: What is the last thing you ate?
A: I just got back from the farmers market in Tompkins Square Park. I made leftover roasted potatoes with arugula salad, a poached egg, shiitake mushrooms and zucchini bacon. Yummy!
Q: What would you eat for your last meal?
A: Spicy Rigatoni Vodka.